Size does matter

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You are an enthusiastic photographer, having sent many rolls through the processors in the days of film. Where did you put the prints you have taken over the years? Somewhere your friends can look at them and ask the questions where, how, when? Unfortunately, like many other photographers, the prints sit in a drawer in the lounge room.

Then you moved over into the digital era and now have hundreds of thumb nails you can flip through, while looking for the photo you took of your parents 10 years ago. Or even the photo you are particularly proud of in B&W.

Worse still, you try to show someone your photographic masterpieces on your mobile phone with its 7 x 13 mm viewing area.

There is an answer to all this. It is called Wall Art. Wall art is something you should aim towards. Be proud of your images. Be bold. You can keep the images on the wall for as long as you want. And change for others when you want something new.

So what type of image is good for wall art?

First prerequisite is size. A tiddly little 3 x 5 may be fine for looking at in your hand, but you could scarcely hang it on the wall. The smallest you can accept is a 10 x 8, for wall art as size does matter.

Now comes the next problem – if you blow up an average standard print you begin to lose sharpness. Go to 20 x 24 and you will have lost sharpness. This does mean that you have to reject any “soft” images for enlargement and only go for ones that are pin-sharp. Be ruthless with yourself. And don’t listen to anyone else. These are your images for your enjoyment.

Subject matter with wall art pictures is up to you, as all the Thai girls say, but pick one that you enjoy and more importantly, one where the subject fills the frame.

Now to the frame for wall art: The frame is merely to stop the image being damaged. The framing shops will want you to get a large ornate, gilded one, because they are more expensive and a wide matte ditto. Reject all those, as the subject for wall art must be the dominant part of the image. The subject has to be the Hero. A smooth border and a narrow matte is all that is needed. Don’t let the frame maker hijack your art.

However, at the weekend I saw another way to get some great wall art – on a canvas backing on an artist’s frame. The print is stretched over a wooden frame (like an artist’s painting) and it makes for a very dramatic way of display. Not cheap, the one in the shop was a 20 x 24 and they wanted B. 1,500 for it. The framing is actually done in Bangkok and takes 8 days.

The best way is to download your selected image on to a memory stick and present that to the shop. I always make a copy from the original and present that to the framers, so that you haven’t lost your best image if something goes awry. Oh yes, the name of the shop in the Central Festival was called Eastbourne.